The Consecration of the Church of the Resurrection of Christ.


From the Prologue

When the holy Empress Helena found the Lord's Cross in Jerusalem, she stayed longer in the city and built churches in Gethsemane, in Bethlehem, on the Mount of Olives and in other places that commemorated the life and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. On Golgotha, where she found the Precious Cross, she began to build an enormous church, under whose roof would be the places both where the Lord was crucified and where He was buried, the holy Empress wanting to bring under one roof the places of His suffering and His glory. But Helena went to the Lord before this magnificent church was completed. It was finished in the same year in which Constantine completed thirty years on the throne, and so the consecration of the church and the Emperor's Jubilee were fixed for the same day, September 13th, 335. At that time, a local Council of bishops was meeting in Tyre. These bishops, with many others, made their way to Jerusalem, to the solemn consecration of the Church of the Resurrection of the Lord. It was then instituted that this day, as a day of victory and triumph for the Church of Christ, should be celebrated every year.

NAME:The Hieromartyr Cornelius the Centurion.

A Roman and an officer in Palestinian Caesarea, he was baptised by the Apostle Peter after a heavenly vision (Acts 10:1), and was the first pagan to enter the Church of God. Until then, some thought that the Church of Christ was only for the Jews and for those who received Jewish circumcision. Being baptised, Cornelius left everything and followed the Apostle Peter. The Apostle later made him bishop and sent him to the pagan town of Skepseis, where holy Cornelius suffered much humiliation and pain for the sake of Christ. But, by the power of God, he destroyed the temple of Apollo and baptised the prince of that town, Dimitrios, and two hundred and seventy seven pagans. Forewarned by God of the day of his death, he gathered all the Christians together, gave them counsel, prayed to God and peacefully went to his Lord full of years. In time, his grave was forgotten and neglected, but the saint appeared to Silvanus, the Bishop of Troas, and showed him the whereabouts of his grave, commanding him to build a church there. The bishop did so, with the help of a wealthy citizen, Eugenius. Many miracles have been performed over his relics.

NAME:The Holy Martyrs Macrobius and Gordian.

From Pamphlagonis, they were at first imperial cup-bearers, but, when they revealed that they were Christians,, the Emperor exiled them to Sceta, where they were cast into the flames in a place called New Danube, in the year 320.

NAME:The Holy Martyr Ketevana, Queen of Georgia.

She suffered as a Christian under Shah Abbas I, in 1624. By order of the Shah, a white-hot helmet was placed on her head. Her son Taymuraz, King of Georgia, laid her relics under the throne in the church at Alaverdsk in Georgia.

NAME:Our Holy Father Hierotheos.

Born in the Peloponnese in the village of Kalamata, he lived in asceticism in the monastery of Iviron on the Holy Mountain. He was distinguished by great secular learning and by strict monastic asceticism, and was at pains to fulfill the rule of St Arsenius: 'It is enough for a monk to sleep one hour out of the twenty-four.' He entered into rest in 1745 on the island of Varos, and his relics have wonderworking power. Of these relics, his head is preserved in the monastery of Iviron. On touching his holy relics in Constantinople, a blind woman received her sight.

From The Prologue From Ochrid by Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich
©1985 Lazarica Press, Birmingham UK

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